Friday, April 29, 2016

DIY Power Tool Dangers

It was great to read this story (Research into D-I-Y accidents finds power tool users need better safety training) in UniNews yesterday. Not only was it a fascinating story about an even more fascinating research project but it shows how staff from our vocational and higher education areas have come together to work on education and research projects. 

In this instance, CQUniversity Metal Fabrication Teacher Gary Balderson and Dean of the School of Education and the Arts, Dr Bill Blayney, looked at the connection between the rise of Do-It-Yourself related injuries and product awareness. Something that I think is relevant to many people who aim to tackle projects around the home - and something that many Queenslanders will be doing as we approach a long weekend this week. 

The uptake of Do It Yourself (DIY) home renovations has rapidly increased across Australia with a subsequent increase in injury rates.  Currently, there is no requirement by suppliers to provide product awareness training for hobbyist/DIY consumers. There is growing concern about the impact of injury to the health and well-being of the individual and also the negative financial issues that impact on the community. In fact, the survey found two-thirds of the respondents were reading the instructions, but only 40% understood what they were reading!

This type of research is important and practical and is a great example of a comprehensive university like CQUniversity in action. It's great hearing about these projects and I really look forward to witnessing more examples of our VET and higher ed staff and students working together like this in the future. 

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